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household bulbs, mood alteration, colored bulbs, two colors

The powers of light and color

Author: Sabrina McIntosh

The use of colored lights is becoming more popular as people discover the benefits of this practice. Whether to set a mood, calm you down, or wake you up, light has long been used to affect our frame of mind. Colored light is an easy and affordable method of mood alteration. Household bulbs in a variety of colors are available at many stores for a reasonable cost.

I use colored lights for a variety of purposes. I started years ago when I realized blue light made me feel calm. My favorite room for blue light is the bathroom, where I enjoy spending time in the bath to relax. I also like to use colored lights in other rooms around the house to provide the atmosphere I want the room to achieve. For example, I like a soft pink light in the bedroom because it gives me a feeling gentleness and security.

When choosing a color, first determine what you wish to achieve. Colors can give different feelings to different people. If you feel a different color would better suit your needs, go with your feelings. Experiment by adding colored light to a room in your house and experiencing it for a few days. When you are in that room, let yourself acknowledge the light and enjoy it. My favorite place for colored light is in the bathroom, where I relax in the bath. I like a dark blue light then, because it helps me feel relaxed. Try mixing two colors for different results by putting different colored bulbs in two or more lamps around the room.

The following is a general guide to colors and the moods they promote. I have compiled this list from my experiences and the experiences of others. I always encourage people with whom I share the use of colors to experiment and discover what works for them. The experimentation can be fascinating as you learn about the affects light has on you, something many people have never thought about.

Blue- relaxation. Blue light works well in bathrooms if you enjoy relaxing in a bath or shower. It is also good in bedroom lamps if you want to promote calmness and sleep. A blue night-light is often good for children who suffer from nightmares because it is a calming color.

Green- very similar to the effects of blue light. Green light has also been said to decrease appetite. If you are on a diet a green light in the kitchen or dining room may help. Green is also a color of fertility, and if this is what you're trying to achieve in the bedroom, a green light may help.

Red- awakens the spirit. It is energizing and bold. The color red is said to increase appetite, so you may want to keep it out of the dining room unless you're having a dinner party. In the bedroom, red light helps sexual activity, and could lead to active nights! It's not a good color for relaxation or sleep, so you may want to keep two lamps in the bedroom: one for blue light and one for red.

Orange- very similar to red, although more gentle. Orange light helps the imagination and is good for creativity. It is also a refreshing color and its attributes make it an idea color for work situations. Orange gives a feeling of warmth and security as well.

Yellow- uplifting and warm. Yellow light brightens any room and generally makes people feel happier. It's good for social gatherings because people tend to talk more in yellow light. If your home feels cold or impersonal, yellow light can help.

Pink- soft, gentle. Pink promotes feelings of safety and peaceful happiness. In a child's room, pink works well as a night light because of its softness. In the adults' room, pink promotes intimacy and romance.

Purple- spirituality and mystery. Purple sets the mood for serious spiritual exploration. It is the color associated with psychic abilities and helps awaken that aspect. Purple is rich and powerful. It invokes feelings of pride and ability.

Blue and purple together- a great combination for meditation or more relaxed spiritual moments. It marries the royalty of purple with the calmness of blue for a feeling of reassurance and peacefulness.

Blue and green- a calm atmosphere, but not as sleepy as blue alone. This combination is good for more quite get-togethers or intimate conversation.

Red and orange- calms down the affects of red, but not too much. This combination is spirited and lively. Don't use this is you want peace and quite. Instead, save it for a time when you need to be energized.

Orange and yellow- creates more of a warm feeling than yellow alone. Orange and yellow used together are great for social events.

Pink and orange- creates a very warm, safe feeling if the shade of orange is soft. If the orange is too bold, the combination doesn't work well.

Purple and red- not a combination I recommend. The bright red and deep purple can be harsh on the eyes and lead to a headache.

Many of the colors are available in light and deep shades. For a gentle affect, use the light shades. For a more intense affect, use the deeper shades. Try several colors and combinations to determine what works best for you.

Suggested Pdf Resources

Guide to Light and Color in Retail Merchandising
Lighting Application Bulletin
Lecture 26: Color and Light Physics of Light and Color What is Color
Color is a perception; what we “see”. • It is a function of. – light source power at different wavelengths.
Lighting Essentials | January 2011 | Page 23. COLOR: Spectral Power Distribution. Continuous Spectrum Light Sources.

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Suggested Web Resources

The Power of Light Colour Light Therapy
The Power of Light Colour Light Therapy. By Julianne Bien ó colour science consultant.
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